Tag Archive for: laptop

Basic computer security for beginners. Viruses, Trojans, Ransomware, Malware. How to fight back.

Coming to a laptop near you: A new type of security chip from Microsoft

Promotional image of new laptop computer.

In November 2020, Microsoft unveiled Pluton, a security processor that the company designed to thwart some of the most sophisticated types of hack attacks. On Tuesday, AMD said it would integrate the chip into its upcoming Ryzen CPUs for use in Lenovo’s ThinkPad Z Series of laptops.

Microsoft already used Pluton to secure Xbox Ones and Azure Sphere microcontrollers against attacks that involve people with physical access opening device cases and performing hardware hacks that bypass security protections. Such hacks are usually carried out by device owners who want to run unauthorized games or programs for cheating.

Now, Pluton is evolving to secure PCs against malicious physical hacks designed to install malware or steal cryptographic keys or other sensitive secrets. While many systems already have trusted platform modules or protections such as Intel’s Software Guard Extensions to secure such data, the secrets remain vulnerable to several types of attacks.

One such physical attack involves placing wires that tap the connection between a TPM and other device components and extract the secrets that pass between the machines. Last August, researchers disclosed an attack that took only 30 minutes to obtain the BitLocker key from a new Lenovo computer preconfigured to use full-disk encryption with a TPM, password-protected BIOS settings, and UEFI SecureBoot. The hack—which worked by sniffing the connection between the TPM and the CMOS chip—showed that locking down a laptop with the latest defenses isn’t always enough.

A similar attack unveiled three months later showed it was possible to exploit a vulnerability (now fixed) in Intel CPUs to defeat a variety of security measures, including those provided by BitLocker, TPMs, and anti-copying restrictions. Attacks known as Spectre and Meltdown have also repeatedly underscored the threat of malicious code pulling secrets directly out of a CPU, even when the secrets are stored in Intel’s SGX.

A new approach

Pluton is designed to fix all of that. It’s integrated directly into a CPU die, where it stores crypto keys and other secrets in a walled-off garden that is completely isolated…


The Best Cyber Monday Laptop Deals: HP, Chromebooks, Gaming Laptops, and PCs – The New York Times

The Best Cyber Monday Laptop Deals: HP, Chromebooks, Gaming Laptops, and PCs  The New York Times


How To Uninstall Avast Antivirus From Laptop Or Smartphone?

There are quite a few reasons why you might have installed Avast Antivirus in the past. First and foremost, the antivirus software is free to download and comes with bonus features such as a privacy-focused browser. However, this doesn’t mean you would want to keep it forever.

Whether you are getting rid of background programs or upgrading to a better security solution, everyone has their reason to uninstall Avast Antivirus. For those who hardly venture away from trusted websites, this layer of security might not be that necessary. Therefore, such users might also want to uninstall Avast Antivirus and the avast secure browser.

If you want to jettison the antivirus and free up system resources, here is a guide to help you out. Follow the step-by-step instructions here to easily uninstall Avast Antivirus from your desktop/laptop or mobile.

avast free antivirus laptop and mobile

How To Uninstall Avast Antivirus?

There are two ways you can go about this. You can either uninstall the antivirus manually or use the Avast Uninstall Utility. Here are both of these methods.

Manual Uninstallation

  1. Select the magnifying glass icon in the taskbar, type “Add or remove programs,” and click on the same in the results.
add or remove programs search bar

2. Find and select “Avast Free Antivirus” from the program list, click on “Uninstall,” and then confirm your choice.

uninstall using apps & features

3. When the Avast Uninstaller loads, click on “Uninstall.” Click on “Yes” to confirm the decision.

avast uninstaller

4. Once the uninstallation finishes, select either “Restart computer” or “Restart later” to finish the process.

avast antivirus uninstallation restart

Use Avast Uninstall Utility

  1. Download the Avast Uninstall Utility from the official website.
  2. Right-click on the file, select “Run as administrator,” and confirm.
  3. When the Avast Antivirus Clear window pops up, choose “Yes” to restart your computer in Safe Mode.
  4. Once the system reboots and the Avast window opens, select “Uninstall.”
  5. Click on “Restart computer” or “Restart later” to finish the uninstallation process.

Can’t Uninstall Avast Due To “Setup Is Already Running” Issue?

If, while trying to uninstall Avast Antivirus, you’re getting “Setup Is Already Running. Please try to start the…